After a football filled Sunday and an exciting win for the Patriots over the weekend, I am feeling inspired to create the perfect game day dishes. It is so easy to improve typical game day food, by adding just a few simple ingredients.
This dish does require a little more effort than throwing burgers on the grill, but it’s that much better. And remember, based on my research, guys will notice the difference! You’ll be irresistible, wearing your favorite team jersey and serving these delicious sandwiches.
The best part about these Meatball Sub Sliders is you can make the meatballs and sauce in advanced, and then assemble right before serving. Perfect for a party and great for a crowd these sandwiches are easy to make, and since most of the work can be done earlier you’ll have more time to mingle with guests!
For the sauce:
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 ½ tsp. garlic, minced
2 (28 oz.) cans of crushed tomatoes
1 1/2 tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
2 tsp. salt
For the meatballs:
½ cup breadcrumbs, divided
¼ cup milk
8 oz. ground beef
8 oz. ground pork
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. kosher salt
½ tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. dried parsley
½ tsp. dried basil
For the sandwiches:
2 dozen white dinner rolls
1 1/2 cups coarsely grated mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup finely grated pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese
To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion to the pot and sauté until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté, stirring, about 1 minute. Add the crushed tomatoes, parsley, basil, oregano, and salt. If sauce seems to thick, you can thin it to desired consistency by adding water. Bring to a boil, and then lower the heat to a simmer. Let simmer for at least 1-2 hours.
To make the meatballs, combine ¼ cup of the breadcrumbs with the milk in a mixing bowl. Let the breadcrumbs absorb the milk, about 15 minutes. Add the remaining breadcrumbs, ground beef, ground pork, egg, garlic, salt, pepper, parsley and basil to the bowl. Mix well until thoroughly combined. Form into meatballs, about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Heat two tablespoons of oil in a skillet, on medium-high heat. Place meatballs in skillet and cook until done, approximately 10 minutes. Once cooked, add meatballs to sauce.
Make the sandwiches, Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange rolls, cut side up on a baking sheet and brush lightly with olive oil. Bake for 5 minutes, or until lightly toasted. Remove from oven and place 1 meatball, and a spoonful of sauce on each roll. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake until cheese melts, approximately 3-4 minutes. Serve immediately.